5 Prospecting Techniques SMBs Should Keep in Mind


If you want to get the right output in your sales prospecting efforts, you need to make sure that you’re focused on the right input. Otherwise, you’re wasting time on methods that are ineffective and leaving a lot of potential leads untapped. Prospecting is the first step in the sales pipeline, and as such, it’s among the most important. After all, if you can’t generate the leads in the first place, the rest of the pipeline doesn’t matter. 

It's also important to remember that prospecting has changed a lot, even in just the past few years. The way that you approach potential customers needs to be vastly different, as well. To that end, consider all of the options that you have for lead generation and outreach campaigns, including partnering with a team like the experts at Smith.ai. 

When it comes to the techniques that you use to find the leads that will drive your business, here are some must-have strategies to add to your list. 

The SME approach 

An SME is a subject matter expert. You usually hear about these people in certain fields and may think of them as highly educated professionals. However, anyone can be an SME with enough knowledge and experience. One of the best ways to generate leads in today’s world is to present your business as an authority in your industry. 

This includes sharing information on your own website and blog, as well as writing articles for industry publications, speaking at events and conferences, and keeping up with what’s new and relevant to the industry. The point is that you have the answer(s) your prospects need, which is why they choose your business. 

Skip straight to warm connections 

Not all first communications have to be cold outreach. There’s a time and a place for cold calls and emails, but if you want to make the most of your leads, do a little research first. Even if you just pull connections off relevant social media posts, for example, that can help you create a more tailored connection when you do reach out. Take the time to learn a little about your prospects and what they want or why they’re looking for a company like yours. Then, when you do make that first call or email, you’ll already have connections to build upon. 

As an SMB, you’ve got to prioritize your efforts and your time. If you want to maximize your leads while doing that, you should always “warm up” potential prospects before you even make that first critical outreach. 

Take advantage of scripts 

If you’re a small business, you probably also have a small sales team. Without the resources of larger companies, it can feel daunting to prepare your reps for the “real world” of making calls and prospecting new leads. Fortunately, there is no shortage of sample material online to help you create effective outreach scripts for all of your communications. 

You should have separate scripts for each channel or type of communication that you’re using, as well as for the leads that are warm versus leads that may need a little more coaxing. And remember, this is a script, not a word-for-word rehearsal—when training your reps, remind them this is a guide and they should feel free to alter it as needed to fit the conversation. 

Stop pitching and start listening 

There’s something to be said for less talking and more listening when it comes to sales. The modern consumer is fully aware that companies are selling products and services. However, no one wants to be sold anything. Sales pitches have a time and a place, but you can often gain a lot more leads when you put your pitch aside and start listening to your prospects. 

What are their pain points? What are they missing from competitors? How can you provide the solution they need? When you have a conversation with your prospects, you’ll gather a lot more valuable information that you can use to close the deal. If you’re just having sales reps open with a pitch, you’re missing out on a lot of potential opportunities right from the start. 

Outsource what you can 

As a small business, you don’t have a lot of in-house resources compared to larger companies and enterprise brands. However, you do have access to the same type of resources, thanks to outsourcing. You can get everything that you need from a high-quality in-house sales team without having to hire a single employee. 

Outsourcing allows you to let someone else handle certain aspects of your outreach and lead generation so that you can focus your efforts on those leads that are closer to closing. It also frees up your time and resources to handle other things and still guarantees that you never miss a single opportunity. 

Of course, you’ll need to choose your outsourcing partners wisely. Look for companies that assist with everything from outreach to follow-up and everything in between. The more services you can get from one partner, the better. 

Wrap-up: a quick review

So, there you have it – five essential strategies that need to be on your list if you’re an SMB that’s looking to step up your lead prospecting game. Remember:

  • Be the trusted resource your leads need
  • Have a conversation, don’t pitch 
  • Utilize scripts as conversation guides 
  • Turn cold leads into warm prospects with research
  • Make sure you create a buyer persona for each target 
  • Utilize all prospecting tools and channels accordingly 
  • Take advantage of outsourcing and other experts

Ready to take prospecting up a notch? Reach out to Smith.ai now

When you choose a partnership with the virtual receptionists at Smith.ai, you’ll get a team of dedicated experts to assist with all aspects of your lead prospecting and outreach campaigns, including a 24/7 answering service so that you never miss any incoming leads or queries. 

Plus, we can provide support for lead intake and appointment scheduling, and even set you up with live chat so your prospects can reach you on their terms. To learn more, schedule a consultation or reach out to hello@smith.ai

Business Education
Small Business
Written by Samir Sampat

Samir Sampat is a Marketing Manager with Smith.ai. He has experience working with businesses of all sizes focusing on marketing, communications, and business development.

Take the faster path to growth.
Get Smith.ai today.

Affordable plans for every budget.

Take the faster path to growth.
Get Smith.ai today.

Affordable plans for every budget.